"The suspects wore Louboutins", a 'The Bling Ring' review.

(Kinda spoilery)
It's no secret at all that i'm a Sofia Coppola lover/fan/admirer whatever you want to call it. But anything she does interests me. So whenever she has a new movie coming out i get anxious which can backfire because high expectations usually lead to disappointment. And with 'The Bling Ring' this has happened in a way but not quite.

I already knew the whole story beforehand, i watched 'Pretty Wild', the reality show on which Emma Watson's and Taissa Farmiga's characters are based, and the whole trial was on the news, so there was little left to the story that surprised me. Just like with 'Marie Antoinette', 'The Bling Ring' starts really good, you get to see the gang hanging out at Paris Hilton's house and take a peek inside the heir's mansion, but soon after the excitement of the breaking in fades, the rythm of the movie takes a slower tune. Which may be totally intentional because for the characters, there's no adrenaline rush anymore in getting into celebs' homes and it gets boring and slow for the viewer, which happens with 'Marie Antoinette' as well. That's the main problem i think 'The Bling Ring' has, that it doesn't work as a movie as a whole, it's not full circle as 'Lost in Translation' was.

But I understand why Coppola would have an interest on making a movie about this group of teenagers; this gang did what they did just because they could, these kids came from well-off families, it's not like they couldn't afford some designer items, but they were fascinated by celebrities at that time, and just wanted to feel like them. This was the time were Paris Hilton, Nicole Richie and Mischa Barton were everywhere with their street-style looks, Lindsay Lohan was making headlines for her multiple DUIs and she even glamourised her looks when going to court. And these teens were totally obsessed with that.

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"I think we just wanted to be part of the lifestyle. The lifestyle that everybody kinda wants."

They just wanted to feel like celebrities and even when they were arrested for burglary, they loved the media attention and the paparazzi chasing them everywhere, because in a way, they were part of that now. Even Taissa Farmiga's character Sam complains about not being arrested and therefore not on the spotlight like the rest. They have a twisted vision for everything in their lives and for Marc and Rebecca, the two main characters and the ring leaders, the ultimate betrayal would be to rob one another, which is exactly what they're doing to those celebs and why they became friends in the first place.

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Also, it's easy to see similarities between Harmony Korine's 'Spring Breakers' and Sofia Coppola's 'The Bling Ring', as both groups of gangs have this sick version of reality and have grown up wanting to be famous, blinded by their unrealistic wishes for adventure, for living life to the fullest, like celebrities, like those rappers they watched on MTV. Both depict today's youth as media obsessed, youngsters who ony care about partying and getting the coolest things, designer clothes, guns, fast cars, getting high, driving drunk, shirts in all colours, the American dream.

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I can say that i liked this movie, it's better than 'Somewhere' in my opinion, and while i hated the ending scene with Nikki, Watson's character on the talk show – it would have ended so much better with Marc's  previous scene going into jail – the rest is fine. It lacks all those pretty images Sofia Coppola usually has on her movies (with some exceptions, like the Katie Chang scene below), and the music is always on point (Sofia knows how to create all those music moments we have in life), but overall and despite getting a bit bored towards the end, the movie is fine. I understand people hating it as well as people loving it, so watch it and decide for yourselves.

After the cut i posted some (spoilery) stills i loved from the movie, because who wouldn't love to enter someone's mansion and take all their pretty stuff just because, i dare you, who?

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1 comment:

  1. I had a mixed reaction to this film but given that I had a similar feeling on watching Marie Antoinette, a film I now adore, I am waiting to re-watch it before forming a more solid opinion. There were moments of beauty that captured their boredom and need for exhileration brilliantly, I thought Katie Chang was fantastic and my heart broke for Marc when he sees the facebook change. I liked how Coppola shot one of the burglaries purely from an external view.